MacTaggart History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

In ancient Scotland, the ancestors of the MacTaggart family were part of a tribe called the Picts. The name MacTaggart is derived from the Gaelic name Mac an t-Sagairt, which means "son of the priest." [1]

Early Origins of the MacTaggart family

The surname MacTaggart was first found in Ross-shire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Rois) a former county, now part of the Council Areas of Highland and Western Isles in Northern Scotland, which emerged from the Gaelic lordship of the Earl of Ross. One of the first on record was Ferchar, son of the Red Priest of Applecross in Ross. He was knighted by King Alexander of Scotland in 1215 for his assistance in subduing the rebellious clans of Moray. He eventually became the Earl of Ross. [1]

The Chronicle of Melrose noted: "Machentagar attacked them and mightily overthrew the king's enemies; and he cut off their heads and presented them as gifts to the new king ... And because of this, the lord king appointed him a new knight."

Fearchar of Ross or Ferchar mac in tSagairt (anglicized as Farquhar MacTaggart), was the first of the Scottish Ó Beólláin (O'Beolan, Beolan) family who received by Royal Grant the lands and Title of Mormaer or Earl of Ross (1223-1251.)

Early History of the MacTaggart family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacTaggart research. Another 143 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1459, 1504, 1527, 1581, 1583, 1688, 1789, 1867, 1835, 1857, 1841 and 1938 are included under the topic Early MacTaggart History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

MacTaggart Spelling Variations

The appearance of the printing press and the first dictionaries in the last few hundred years did much to standardize spelling. Prior to that time scribes spelled according to sound, a practice that resulted in many spelling variations. MacTaggart has been spelled MacTaggart, MacTagart, MacIntaggart, MacTuggart, MacToggart and many more.

Early Notables of the MacTaggart family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the Clan at this time was Sir John McTaggart, 1st Baronet (1789-1867), a Scottish Liberal MP in the British Parliament who represented Wigtown Burghs (1835-1857) and was created a Baronet in 1841. The...
Another 35 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacTaggart Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States MacTaggart migration to the United States +

The expense of the crossing to the North American colonies seemed small beside the difficulties of remaining in Scotland. It was a long and hard trip, but at its end lay the reward of freedom. Some Scots remained faithful to England and called themselves United Empire Loyalists, while others fought in the American War of Independence. Much of this lost Scottish heritage has been recovered in the last century through Clan societies and other patriotic Scottish organizations. A search of immigration and passenger lists revealed many important, early immigrants to North America bearing the name of MacTaggart:

MacTaggart Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Thomas MacTaggart, aged 36, who immigrated to the United States, in 1910
  • William Alexander MacTaggart, aged 42, who settled in America from Hawick, Scotland, in 1911
  • Margaret Jane MacTaggart, aged 40, who settled in America from Hawick, Scotland, in 1911
  • Duncan Matheson MacTaggart, who arrived in Alabama in 1920 [2]
  • Annie MacTaggart, aged 29, who landed in America from Glasgow, Scotland, in 1922
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada MacTaggart migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

MacTaggart Settlers in Canada in the 20th Century
  • Duncan Donald Mactaggart, aged 57, who settled in Montreal, Canada, in 1919
  • Geraldine MacTaggart, aged 49, who immigrated to Montreal, Canada, in 1924

Australia MacTaggart migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

MacTaggart Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Robert MacTaggart, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Trafalgar" in 1849 [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name MacTaggart (post 1700) +

  • FIona Margaret Mactaggart (b. 1953), Scottish politician, Member of Parliament for Slough (1997-2017)
  • James MacTaggart (1928-1974), Scottish born television producer, director and writer
  • Sir John Auld Mactaggart (b. 1951), 4th Baronet
  • Sir Ian Auld Mactaggart (1923-1987), 3rd Baronet, Chairman of the Society for Individual Freedom
  • Sir John Auld Mactaggart (1898-1960), 2nd Baronet, Managing Director of Mactaggart & Mickel
  • Sir John MacTaggart (1789-1867), 1st Baronet, Scottish Liberal politician who represented Wigtown Burghs (1835 to 1857) co-founder of the building firm Mactaggart & Mickel
  • Sir William MacTaggart (1903-1981), Scottish painter, President of the Scottish Academy
  • Alastair "Sandy" Auld Mactaggart (1928-2017), Scottish-born, Canadian educator and philanthropist, Chancellor of the University of Alberta (1990-1994)
  • John Ellis MacTaggart (1866-1925), English philosopher

The MacTaggart Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Ratione non vi
Motto Translation: By reason, not by force.

  1. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  2. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  3. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The TRAFALGAR 1849. Retrieved from on Facebook